Unsafe Buildings

Under the authority of IC 36-7-9, Huntington County and the towns of Andrews, Markle, Mount Etna, Roanoke, and Warren have enacted an unsafe building ordinance. DCD is responsible for the administration and enforcement of unsafe structures. The unsafe building law is a tool used by these jurisdictions to maintain safe building conditions, eliminate blight, and preserve property values.

The town of Andrews has adopted additional criteria concerning standards for building condition or maintenance in the form of a minimum housing code, which is jointly enforced by DCD and the Health Department.

What is an Unsafe Building?

IC 36-7-9-4 defines an “unsafe building” as any building or structure, or any part of a building or structure, that is:

  1. in an impaired structural condition that makes it unsafe to a person or property;
  2. a fire hazard;
  3. a hazard to the public health;
  4. a public nuisance;
  5. dangerous to a person or property because of a violation of a statute or ordinance concerning building condition or maintenance; or
  6. vacant and not maintained in a manner that would allow human habitation, occupancy, or use under the requirements of a statute or an ordinance.

Unsafe Process

The Department investigates complaints filed by the general public concerning unsafe structures, conducts inspections, and issues orders of enforcement. For properties in the unincorporated areas of the county, the Huntington County Board of Commissioners is the designated hearing authority. For properties within an incorporated town, the corresponding town council serves as the designated hearing authority.

When the Department issues an order of enforcement, and that order is upheld or modified by the hearing authority, property owners are given time to correct the deficiencies as outlined in the order. Under state law, the maximum timeframe for compliance that the Department is allowed to give is sixty (60) days, if the order is upheld by the hearing authority. The hearing authority may also modify the order to give additional time beyond the sixty (60) day limit. If a property owner fails to make necessary repairs in a timely fashion, the hearing authority may assess penalties for non-compliance, arrange for repairs, or even demolish the structure at the expense of the owner.

To submit an unsafe structure complaint, please complete this form.

Contact Us

Mandy Woods, Executive Director
201 N Jefferson St
Room 204
Huntington, IN 46750

  • Phone: (260) 358-4840
  • Fax: (260) 355-2313
  • Staff Directory
  • Office Hours:
    8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
    Monday - Friday

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